Lunar Sorcery

From: peter metcalfe (metcalph@voyager.co.nz)
Date: Sat 03 Jan 1998 - 14:02:43 EET


John Constable:

>My question
>(s) to the Illuminated of the list :-) is that sandy mentions Lunar
>sorcery as having different saints and/or techniques. Before I make
>anything up, has anyone done any work on this, or got any ideas?

Greg has done heaps of work on the Lunar Cosmology. I dunno whether
anybody has anything rules wise tho.

>Also, is there any knowledge as to what the Lunar Colleges of magic
>are like, what they teach (I am thinking Illumination, Lunar Spirit
>magic to the Red Goddess Initiates and Sorcery to the rest), and what
>are the credentials for entry?

The Lunars have three philosophies of magic: Materialism (related
to sorcery RQ3 style), Theism (worship of the Gods) and Asceticism
(related to illumination). I don't know if some schools are
exclusively devoted to one philosophy or what. My guess is that
they use a mixture of styles with one dude being a sorcerer with
minor illumination, another a Jakaleeli witch sans marbles etc.

Being in the Lunar College of Magic is like joining the army.
Your actions are pretty much state-controlled and it's only
at the higher ranks that you end up with lattitude to engage
on personal projects (like trying to talk to dragons). People
can be kicked out of the College but the causes and additional
penalties must be very high IMO.

There are Seven Lunar Collges, the Spell Archers, the Comet
Seers, the Crater Makers and the Blue Moon School. There may
be others as yet unheard off.

The Seven Lunar Colleges are the Major and Minor Class Magicans
mentioned in Dragon Pass. Another source (Lunar Wane Chronicles)
has them described as the Cresent Go School, the Full Moon School
etc. Yet another (unpublished) source describes them as the Nathic
School, the Orogeric School, the Gerran School etc.

Tarsh War describes the basic Lunar magician in these colleges.

        'A Priestess enters one of the Minor Classes and must
        serve a four year course before being awarded the star-
        covered graduation robes. The course includes battle
        magic, ritual magic and Lunar Sorcery. They are taught
        to use compatible magic power, acting together as a
        single unit and directing their spells together. Within
        each class, however, each Sorority has its own speciality
        Rune Spell or technique.'
                        Tarsh War p50.

The key feature of these schools is that their most devastating
spell cannot be used alone, it requires the presence of others
in their school. Thus a Lunar Magician would have 5-10 POW (or

more) worth of magic that is completely useless to him by himself
but combined with six or seven others makes him something to be
feared. Another point is that the magician would be illuminated
as a result of his training to allow him to master the tasks
expected of him.

That leaves the personal magics which are generally side-arms
and knick-knacks the magician has picked up in the course of
his studies. What this would be depends, I think, on what
philosophy the magician follows:

1) The Materialist would be a standard sorcerer with the
speciality of Lunar Sorcery if you use Sandy's rules. Some of
his Saints would be standard Malkioni Saints garbled by New
Pelorian (Malkion is known as Malakinus frex) whereas others
are exotic saints known to the Lunars (like important Magi,
Karsdevanic Clarifiers and Lunar Heroes). Some of these would
mimic the more traditional malkioni saints but be slighly
different.

2) The Theist would be a standard RQ3 priestess with rune magics
and lunar sorcery as described in Gods of Glorantha. I think
they would know similarly exotic tricks when it comes to Divine
Magic but these would be heavily ritualized and not something that
one could cast on the fly.

3) The Ascetic would have a whole raft of geases which confer
upon him abilities that should be freaky. The more important
the gift, the more severe the geas. He might be immune to
certain types of magic, have the ability to kill people with
a special touch, speak in tongues etc and he might be forbidden
to cast magic on certain days etc.

No magician would follow exclusively one philosophy. In most
cases, their magics would be geared towards mindblasts, glamours,
blessings, charms and healings.

On the other schools:

The Blue Moon School worships Annilla as a Patron and is involved
in assasination, espionage and making people forget.

The Spell Archers are, according to Tarsh War, illuminated Dara
Happan Priests. I think their attack is a massive Sunspear
and they are the unit defeated at the battle of Pennel Ford
in King of Sartar. Their other magics are heavily fire
orientated IMO.

The Crater Makers summon chunks of Moonrock from the surface of
the Moon. They can make it fall anywhere. A magician of this
school would also know how to summon Lunes.

The Comet Seers, IMO, are Yuthuppan Starseers with a talent
for sending stellar spirits against their foes.

- --Peter Metcalfe

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